We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our hard-exercise friends know that results require working in pain; that "pain is the feeling of weakness leaving your body." We all know that if you stop when it begins to hurt, you get nowhere. That is why so many people avoid it.
Same applies to weight-loss plans: it hurts. Indulgence is briefly rewarding, pain and deprivation are painful. Good pain, but pain.
It turns out that resisting the deterioration of age requires stress and pain - mental and/or physical. It is no surprise to me that much-maligned "stress" is what can keep us physically and mental fit until something inevitably cuts us down: How to Become a ‘Superager’
In the United States, we are obsessed with happiness. But as people get older, research shows, they cultivate happiness by avoiding unpleasant situations. This is sometimes a good idea, as when you avoid a rude neighbor. But if people consistently sidestep the discomfort of mental effort or physical exertion, this restraint can be detrimental to the brain. All brain tissue gets thinner from disuse. If you don’t use it, you lose it.
Interesting that the brain deteriorates also with lack of physical stress. Who knew? Up here in Yankeeland, many of us still view "leisure" and "relaxation" with Puritan suspicion, and the notion of retirement the same. Maybe we are right to seek challenge, discomfort, and stress and to avoid leisure and passive recreation. Learn piano, or a language. Get a hard job. Lift heavy weights. Let's all get deep into life this year to try to slow down Time. I will.
In 2017 I'll do my level best to not to excessively highlight: the stern moral fortitude considerable enough to drive right into the teeth of an international leisure schedule of continuing memoirs, lectionaries among catered booze budgets of shared note, and incorrectly using "stress". Which is the killer exertion typically isn't, actually.
If at some point I become so tedious that I also become intolerable, just say so. The full aspect of engaging the commenting public on one's private advice blog remains logically challenging to me.